Motion sickness in travellers is a common condition that can be experienced while moving in a car, boat, airplane, or other vehicle. Irregular repeated movements like a plane’s drop in altitude, or a car going around a curve, causes the brain to receive mixed signals. The messages sent through the eyes inform the brain that the person is moving with speed, while the ears convey that the person is sitting still. These mixed signals can lead to an internal feeling of sickness. The primary symptom of motion sickness is nausea, but other symptoms can include headache, fatigue, sweating, shallow breathing, drooling saliva, and paleness of skin.
Stimulating Your Other Senses Can Distract You From the Motion
Since the main cause of motion sickness involves the eyes and ears, distraction techniques can be utilized by stimulating these and other senses to bring back balance and relief. For example, fixing your eyes on the horizon or just keeping them closed can reverse the effects that bring about motion sickness. Listening to music while travelling is another distraction technique. You can also open the windows if possible to receive fresh air. In addition, a simple mental activity such as counting odd numbers can be a great form of distraction, along with any other creative techniques you can come up with.
Eat Lightly for Prevention
CAR TRIP: It is well known that eating snacks like crackers or toast helps control car sickness, but more recent studies have shown that a protein shake not only prevents feelings of sickness, but can also reverse the feelings and symptoms. Mix a glass of water with a single serving of protein powder and drink before going on your trip.
PLANE TRIP: Since dehydration is known to trigger motion sickness when flying, avoid things like caffeine and extra-salty foods. Instead, eat something light but rich in protein before take-off, such as grilled chicken or fish, boiled eggs, or a salad.
BOAT TRIP: Going hungry on an empty stomach is a trigger for boat-related motion sickness. Light protein-rich snacks, eaten every few hours, is a good alternative.
TRAIN RIDE: For trains, prior to boarding, avoid greasy meals and go for a small meal or snack that’s low in fat but high in protein.
Aroma Therapy for Motion Sickness
This involves inhaling (breathing in) the aroma of certain essential oils which have been proven to prevent and relieve motion sickness. These oils include ginger, peppermint, spearmint, roman chamomile, coriander, cardamom, and fennel. Inhale a few drops off a tissue or inhaler 30 to 60 minutes before travelling, and at intervals if necessary while travelling.
Coping With Emotional Stress
Emotional stress and anxiety can arise before a trip in people who know they are regular victims of motion sickness. The most well-known remedy for this is called the Bach Rescue. It is available in different options such as creams, sprays, and chewables, and works by restoring calm and relaxation to the nervous system.